Born Dec. 22, 1990/
• Won two national kart titles in’06.
• Two years at Skip Barber resulted
in runner-up championship finishes
at both regional and national level.
• Unlucky to finish “only” second in
the ’09 British Formula Ford series.
• GP3 Series in 2010; scored one pole.
While his best result in
his rookie season was
only 11th, Newgarden
took three fastest laps
last year, all outside the
U.S. – at Sao Paulo,
Toronto and Edmonton.
from Sam Schmidt Motorsports – the
powerhouse team – to Team Moore,
which had only won one race previously,
and yet we fought for the championship
down to the last round. My point is, I’ve
been in many different scenarios, but
being in the team with the target on
its back, there is a lot of expectation.
JN But I think there’s a different element
in 2013 compared with last year, in that
it’s gotten closer, and I head to each event
thinking anyone can win. So now every
driver has that pressure: everyone should
be legitimately asking themselves, “Why
didn’t I win this weekend?” or “Why
haven’t I finished on the podium yet?”
Last year, how hard was it to go from the
best Indy Lights team, into an IndyCar
team that hadn’t yet run a whole season?
JN: I liked it because of that situation. It’s
fun to be part of an infrastructure that’s
growing. At Schmidt, everything was
already in place, but at Sarah Fisher’s
team, we had a new car, a virtually new
team, and a single driver who was a rookie.
The reason we’re doing better this year
isn’t just because I’m driving better and
understanding more what I need to do for
the team; we’re also seeing the team
mature. Each key person is contributing
more as we learn what’s required.
James, how do you compare what you
had to do in 2011 as a rookie – learn the
old car and get up to speed – to what
Josef had to do when everyone started
from ground zero with the new car?
JH I think I had the easier job because I
got to learn about IndyCar in a car that
was already sorted – which meant I could
focus on getting myself up to speed and
As part of the ’08 Team USA Scholarship
program, Newgarden won the Kent
class in the UK Formula Ford Festival,
then took nine wins in the ’09 FF series.
After a troubled year in GP3, Josef
returned to the U.S. in 2011, joining
Sam Schmidt’s Indy Lights team.
Five wins led to the championship.
F. Peirce Williams/LAT
Starting seventh for his first
Indianapolis 500 was one of many
impressive qualifying runs for
Josef and the SFHR team in 2012.